[Marxism] Re: When Left Parties are Appropriate

Tom O'Lincoln suarsos at alphalink.com.au
Wed Aug 18 20:27:17 MDT 2004

Tony Abdo to Lou Paulsen:
>>Lou, I am not convinced much by what you wrote below.  I would love to
see some greater introspection from the WWP about why your organization has
been unable to grow, even while organizing some pretty important work.<<

For my part I thought Lou's post was excellent, though it's mainly
negative, i.e. explaining why regroupment isn't a panacea. Tony's question
remains a good one, but I would answer it with other questions: Why limit
ourselves to putting this challenge to the organised cadre groups like WWP?
Why not ask: why hasn't the far left grown qualitatively anywhere in the
industrialised world for a long time? There are odd exceptions of course,
but not enough to disprove the generalisation. Solidarity in the US is
supposed to be an alternative to more "sectarian" organisational forms - so
why hasn't it grown? Anarchists denounce Leninism altogether, but they
haven't grown either. On this list we periodically hear what great
alternatives Hal Draper offered in the seventies -- but what did he build?
Nothing. Touching on another non "Marxist Leninist" strategy, Louis Proyect
has created the best left e-mail discussion list on the net; a significant
contribution, but it's still not exactly a mass movement.

The bitter reality is that in the west at least, historical developments
have reduced socialism to much the same marginal status it had before the
rise of mass Social Democracy. That is a very big fact, which I fear will
not be resolved by critiquing WWP's organisational methods.

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